Through This Defiance Interview

Through This Defiance are a “hardcore/hip hop/metal band from Los Angeles, California. Recently they came on tour to South Africa for the second time. I got to speak to Ant after their show at ROAR in Cape Town…

What have you guys got up to while you’ve been in South Africa?

We went on a safari in PE with wild animals and shit… Addo Elephant Park. We also went to Cango caves. We’re having a blast man, just getting to know all the guys… building family, you know, with the Reason to Live guys and whoever else. Just living on the road, day in, day out.

Zach mentioned that you guys want to try come to SA every year. What is it that you love so much about South Africa?

The heart… the heart man. You don’t even have to be a hardcore kid here, kids just come from everywhere to support. It’s all about the love, what hardcore’s about.

Favourite city so far?

Internationally, Fredericia in Denmark. In South Africa, I’m gonna have to say Joburg, just because we’ve played most of our shows there and it’s where Reason to Live are from. But Cape Town definitely gives us some fucking love dude.

Have there been any standout bands on the tour? What do you think of the SA bands in general?

Reason to Live! All the way man. Those guys are my family. And definitely Give Back, bringing that old-school hardcore back. A lot of bands are too scared to play that style. It’s all about that metal shit now. It’s good to see bands in other countries playing that style of hardcore.

What’s the comparison like between LA and here?

The appreciation. Kids appreciate music more here by far. Kids in the US take it for granted. They’re too spoilt for choice. But you guys really just appreciate what we do. Hardcore is gonna get big in South Africa, and lots more bands are gonna come out. I know it. I’m just glad to say that we’re one of the first to do it.

“Through This Defiance”. Does it have a political meaning? A personal meaning? Where does the name come from?

I grew up in hardcore in the early ’90s. My favorite band in the world was a band called Strife, and they had a song called Through and Through that I really related to. The name of their album was called Truth Through Defiance. That’s where the name comes from. Hostility Towards the Opposition comes from a band I grew up with and went to school with, called Downset. Check them out.

What other projects have you been/are you guys involved in?

Well, Terence and me are both from a band called Skare Tactic. Our bassist, Zach, played in a band called Signs of Hope. Our drummer, Eddy, comes from Mexico and a band called Will to Live. They’re fucking huge and have been around for years man.

You guys have had some member changes since your last tour here. Would you say that this is your strongest line-up?

I’m the only original member. Everyone else is new. And yeah, it’s the strongest by far.

Do you have any knowledge or tips to give to the people who are trying to grow our small scene here in South Africa?

The number one thing is: don’t wait for anyone to do shit for you, ever. Get out and do it yourself. A lot of hardcore kids are losing the heart and the drive to do it.

How would you explain what your music sounds like to someone who doesn’t know anything about music?

Energetic with a heavy bounce.

Who/what are TTD’s influences?

E.Town Concrete from New Jersey, Downset, Strife… All the members of this band come from different musical backgrounds; be it punk, hardcore, or metal, which gives us a unique sound.

Do you promote any kind of message through your music?

A lot of the lyrics are about how we grew up… Running the streets, growing up in a not-so-suburban town. We all go through trials and tribulations and our songs are about those things. Everything’s real. Everything I sing about I have been through and experienced.

Anything else you want to say?

We get asked quite a lot, “How can we do what you do?” It’s motivating man. Grab that drive. Go out there. Do it. Grab your fucking balls and do it yourself because no one’s gonna do it for you. Read the lyrics to our song, One Life One Choice. Support South African hardcore.

Photo by Luke Daniel

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